Fun story, really ... we fished a lot of the usual to start with and didn't have much luck. We did see some dark bodied caddis flying around, along with a few small black stones. Being a small-fly kind of guy, I don't spend much time fishing Stonefly patterns; but guessing the fish were pretty deep, I decided to rig up with a Prince Nymph and egg pattern combination (see reasoning from previous blog).
The tungsten Prince Nymph and slow deep water have a tendency to butt heads, so we found ourselves hooking up on the bottom quite frequently. That's when the gears in my head got turning a bit (insert rusty creaking noise here) and I started doing a light "pull set" to release the fly from the obstacle hanging it up. The thought was, that if a fish hit, I'd feel the resistance, and if not, a slow pull set would imitate a Stonefly crawling toward the banks like its usual hatching process.
Turns out I was right! We ended up hooking 8 fish in about 20 minutes, all in the healthy 14"+ range. It was like clockwork ... we would make a few pull sets and inevitably one of them would pull back, then you just lifted the rod like normal and waited for the fast run of a 14" brown to ensue.
I think that's what I love about this sport so much - even in the highly predictable West, you can still figure out new, unique situations that you've never tried before.
Here's to Discovery!